The Latest: Irish PM urges pope to act on anti-abuse words

Published 08-25-2018

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DUBLIN (AP) - The Latest on Pope Francis' trip to Ireland (all times local):

1:50 p.m.

Ireland's prime minister has urged Pope Francis to use his "office and influence" to ensure clergy sex abuse victims worldwide receive "justice and truth and healing."

Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar addressed the pope on Saturday as Francis began the first papal visit to Ireland in nearly four decades. Varadkar acknowledged the Catholic Church had provided generations of Catholics with education and health care when the Irish government did not.

But he said church and state both had a history of "sorrow and shame," citing the Magdalene laundries where women were confined and forced to work, the homes where unwed mothers were mistreated and the "stain" of clerical sex abuse.

In appealing to the pope, Varadkar cited a recent grand jury report from the U.S. state of Pennsylvania which found 300 priests had abused more than 1,000 children over 70 years.

He cited Francis' own call for "zero tolerance" of abuse and said: "We must now ensure that from words flow actions."

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1:00 p.m.

Pope Francis says he shares the outrage over the failures of church authorities to punish the "repugnant crimes" of priests who raped and molested children, seeking to respond to a global Catholic outcry over the abuse scandal at the start of his visit to Ireland.

In a speech to Irish government authorities on Saturday, Francis cited measures taken by his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, to respond to t

He cited Francis' own call for "zero tolerance" of abuse and said: "We must now ensure that from words flow actions."

___

1:00 p.m.

Pope Francis says he shares the outrage over the failures of church authorities to punish the "repugnant crimes" of priests who raped and molested children, seeking to respond to a global Catholic outcry over the abuse scandal at the start of his visit to Ireland.

In a speech to Irish government authorities on Saturday, Francis cited measures taken by his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, to respond to the clergy abuse crisis. But he provided no new indications that he would take forceful action to hold bishops accountable for protecting children or to sanction them when they fall short.

Francis said: "The failure of ecclesial authorities ... to adequately address these repugnant crimes has rightly given rise to outrage, and remains a source of pain and shame for the Catholic community. I myself share these sentiments."

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10:35 a.m.

Pope Francis has arrived in Ireland for the first papal visit to the country in almost four de

1:00 p.m.

Pope Francis says he shares the outrage over the failures of church authorities to punish the "repugnant crimes" of priests who raped and molested children, seeking to respond to a global Catholic outcry over the abuse scandal at the start of his visit to Ireland.

In a speech to Irish government authorities on Saturday, Francis cited measures taken by his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, to respond to the clergy abuse crisis. But he provided no new indications that he would take forceful action to hold bishops accountable for protecting children or to sanction them when they fall short.

Francis said: "The failure of ecclesial authorities ... to adequately address these repugnant crimes has rightly given rise to outrage, and remains a source of pain and shame for the Catholic community. I myself share these sentiments."

___

10:35 a.m.

Pope Francis has arrived in Ireland for the first papal visit to the country in almost four decades.

A plane carrying Francis and his entourage landed at Dublin International Airport on Saturday after a two-hour flight from Rome.

Hundreds of thousands are expected to welcome the pope, but there will also be demonstrations and vigils by survivors of clergy sex abuse in a country where attitudes on the Catholic Church are shifting. 

Irish Health Minister Simon Harris, who recently played a prominent role in the successful campaign to liberalize the country's strict abortion laws, said it would be a weekend of "mixed emotions."

Harris tweeted: "For many; excitement, for others; feelings of hurt....Whatever your perspective, let's hope for a weekend where reconciliation & healing can commence."

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7:45 a.m.

Pope Francis has departed for Ireland, the first papal visit to that traditionally Roman Catholic country since 1979.

As usual, Francis carried his black leather satchel himself as he climbed the stairs to board an Alitalia A320 on Saturday and greeted the flight crew.

The plane, which also carried his entourage, took off from Rome's Leonardo da Vinci airport at 8:30 a.m. local time (0630 GMT.)

The pope's visit to Ireland risks being dominated by criticism over the Catholic Church hierarchy's handling of predator priests who sexually abused children.

The pope is scheduled to return to Rome late Sunday night.

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6:00 a.m.

Pope Francis is heading to Ireland as the Catholic Church faces a global crisis for its systemic failures to protect children from clergy sex abuse or to punish bishops who hid the crimes.

Francis was expected to meet with abuse victims on Saturday as part of his 36-hour visit to Dublin, where the Vatican says he will have "many opportunities" to speak out about abuse.

His visit is the first by a pope to Ireland in 40 years and is aimed at showing the church understands the problems of ordinary Catholic families.

A Vatican-sponsored World Meeting of Families that opened on Tuesday ends Sunday in Dublin. More than 37,000 people - most of them young Catholics - signed up to attend the event, more than twice the number who did when the family rally was held in Philadelphia three years ago.

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Protesters call for redress for victims of Catholic Church clerical sex abuses, during a protest they held during Pope Francis' visit to Ireland, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit on the occasion of the 2018 World Meeting of Families. (Aaron Chown//PA via AP) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis walks upon his arrival at the Presidential residence in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis sits in a car as he arrived at Dublin international airport, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia) - The Associated Press


People with baby shoes tied with black ribbons hanging from their neck, symbolizing the children who died in "mother and baby homes", the homes where children were exiled for the shame of having been born to unwed mothers, protest in Dublin ahead of the visit of Pope Francis, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018 . The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit. (Aaron Chown/PA via AP) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis boards an airplane at Rome's Fiumicino international airport, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit on the occasion of the 2018 World Meeting of Families. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini) - The Associated Press


A gust of wind blows Pope Francis' cape as he boards an airplane at Rome's Fiumicino international airport, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit on the occasion of the 2018 World Meeting of Families. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini) - The Associated Press


A gust of wind blows Pope Francis' cape as he boards an airplane at Rome's Fiumicino international airport, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit on the occasion of the 2018 World Meeting of Families. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis waves as he boards an airplane at Rome's Fiumicino international airport, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit on the occasion of the 2018 World Meeting of Families. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis boards an airplane at Rome's Fiumicino international airport, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit on the occasion of the 2018 World Meeting of Families. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini) - The Associated Press


Rainbow flags and blue ribbons are tied to Ha'Penny Bridge, Dublin to remember the victims of Catholic Church clerical sex abuse, ahead of the arrival of Pope Francis, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit on the occasion of the 2018 World Meeting of Families. (Niall Carson/PA via AP) - The Associated Press


Blue ribbons are tied to Ha'Penny Bridge, Dublin to remember the victims of Catholic Church clerical sex abuse, ahead of the arrival of Pope Francis, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit on the occasion of the 2018 World Meeting of Families. (Aaron Chown//PA via AP) - The Associated Press


Blue ribbons are tied to Ha'Penny Bridge, Dublin to remember the victims of Catholic Church clerical sex abuse, ahead of the arrival of Pope Francis, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. The pontiff is traveling to Ireland for a two-day visit on the occasion of the 2018 World Meeting of Families. (Aaron Chown//PA via AP) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis, center, is flanked by Irish President Michael D. Higgins, left, and President's wife Sabina at the Presidential residence in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis, center, is flanked by Irish President Michael D. Higgins, left, and President's wife Sabina, upon his arrival at the Presidential residence in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis, right, is flanked by Irish President Michael D. Higgins, upon his arrival at the Presidential residence in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis waves from a car as he leaves Dublin Castle at the end of his meeting with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis meets with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, right, as he arrives at Dublin Castle, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis waves from a car as he leaves Dublin Castle at the end of his meeting with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis and Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, right, leave at the end of their meeting, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (Yui Mok/PA via AP) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis shakes hands with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar as they meet, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis signs a guest book as he meets with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis delivers his speech during his meeting with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis, center, is flanked by Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, right, as they arrive to meet authorities, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis listens as Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, right, delivers his speech during their meeting, in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis meets with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar in Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia) - The Associated Press


Pope Francis plants a tree during a meeting with Irish President Michael D Higgins, right, at Aras an Uachtarain in Phoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. Pope Francis is on a two-day visit to Ireland. (Joe Giddens/PA via AP) - The Associated Press